April 18, 2014

Chad Ford: Cavs Would Love To Trade Up To 2, Considering Lamb at #4

ESPN’s Chad Ford, no matter how you feel about his talent evaluation, is an NBA draft pundit who definitely has his ear to the ground when it comes to NBA team intel. As with the NFL draft, there is always misinformation being intentionally leaked by teams to manipulate the actions of others, so as always, take this with a grain of salt.

In his latest draft blog, Chad Ford writes that the Cavaliers would love to move up to #2:

The Bobcats will likely decide between Kentucky’s Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Kansas’ Thomas Robinson at No. 2. Bradley Beal, Andre Drummond and Harrison Barnes are all in the mix there, but it seems like Kidd-Gilchrist and Robinson are the two top guys on the board.

However, another option might be for the Bobcats to go ahead and trade the pick in an effort to get more assets. The No. 2 pick, whoever it is, isn’t going to turn around the franchise next season. What the Bobcats need is depth.

Two teams to look at are Cleveland and Portland. Both would love to get up to the No. 2 pick. The Cavs would love to get their hands on Kidd-Gilchrist or Beal. The Blazers are also high on Beal.

If the Cavs offered the No. 4 and No. 24 picks, would that be enough for the Bobcats to pull the trigger? If Robinson is their target, yes. If Kidd-Gilchrist is? He’s probably not on the board at No. 4.

The Blazers have the sixth and 11th picks. That’s a steep price to pay to move up four spots in the draft, but if they’re convinced they don’t love a player at No. 6, it might be worth it to them.

Should the Cavaliers not succeed in getting up to #2, and the Wizards being set on taking either MKG or Beal, Ford says the Cavs’ pick might be Barnes, but Jeremy Lamb is a real possibility as well:

The Cavaliers were really hoping to get either Kidd-Gilchrist or Beal out of this draft. Given our current mock, both players are off the board. We currently have the Cavs grabbing Harrison Barnes at No. 4. The Cavs actually were hoping that Barnes was going to be in the draft last year and sources say they would’ve grabbed him at No. 4. Do they still love him after a disappointing sophomore season? Are they willing to roll the dice on Drummond instead? I hear Jeremy Lamb isn’t out of the question here, either.

One final interesting note from Ford, and this one shows how Kyrie Irving is already changing the culture and perception of basketball in Cleveland:

NBA agents are becoming less concerned with how high their clients get drafted and much more concerned about fit and franchise stability. Two teams in particular may have a tough time getting in top talent prior to the draft. GMs see Cleveland, Washington, Portland and Golden State as preferable destinations at the top of the draft. They are scared to death of both Charlotte and Sacramento right now.

I wouldn’t be surprised if the Bobcats and Kings struggle to get every player they want to workout into their gym.

A year ago, there’s no way Cleveland is viewed in the same light as Portland as preferable destinations. This just further demonstrates the impact Kyrie Irving is making in Cleveland. Agents would be extremely happy to have their clients drafted by the Cavaliers and able to pair up with a playmaking PG like Irving. It’s amazing the roller coaster ride this Cavaliers franchise has been on over the last decade.

Ford’s entire article is a nice read full of a lot of interesting tidbits about the lottery teams.

The bottom line in all of this for the Cavaliers is that the Bobcats are going to be the team who set the tone for this draft. As much as many, if not most1, pundits feel that MKG is the 2nd best pick in this draft, all that matters is what the Bobcats decide they want. They know Cleveland wants MKG, and they know they need assets, so a trade with Cleveland makes sense. But not if they intend to overplay their hand.

Cleveland isn’t going to overpay by too much for that #2 pick, not when they know they can take Barnes or Lamb at #4 and fill a severe need. Sure, neither Barnes nor Lamb have the potential that MKG does, but is that gap big enough to warrant giving up more than the #4 and #24 picks for? Not likely.

Expect many more twists, turns, rumors, and leaks between now and the draft, but at least for now in this initial phase, we have some idea of where Cleveland’s head is at. Or at least where they want everyone to think their head is.

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Footnotes:

  1. a lot of pundits do like Drummond as a prospect enough to make him the #2 player on their board []

  • porckchopexpress

    The tables in right field are much more comfortable and present a better “forum” setting.  Oh, and they are actually cheaper than bleacher seats.

  • Steve

     If you are either of those two, are you signing here unless you get a huge, fantastic deal?

  • Steve

     They moved Hickson for a guy just days older and the possibility of getting a first round pick. It’s not like they just gave him away for nothing.

    And for the 18th pick, Hickson ended up a pretty good player, so I’m not sure what the complaints are. And the team gave him a lot of rope to work with anyway. Just because one athletic guy doesn’t completely figure it out doesn’t mean the next one probably won’t either.

    But go ahead and take less athletic/lower ceiling players and let me know where that gets you in the NBA.

  • Steve

     Because the GM before Lebron was here gave away our first round picks for 2005 and 2007 and Lebron was so good so quickly that the team picked 25th in 2006. The Cavs got but one chance at a lottery pick to pair with Lebron.

  • NamedMyKidPrice

    I would not mind any one of the guys mentioned at 4.  I know we have TT but I also would not mind taking Thomas Robinson if he is still there.  I say stay put draft the best available at 4.  If anything I wouldnt mind packaging the 24 and two second round picks to move back into the top 15 and grab the best available there as well.  Watching the Spurs right now they have made a living drafting in the teens and 20′s.  Its all about taking the best available.

  • jmgatskiejr

    Wow, it amazes me how high everybody is on MKG. He seems to be the universal second choice and doesn’t have a reliable jumper. There is no doubt he is an excellent finisher on the break and a great athlete but I really like the smoothness and polish to Beal’s game as a better overall risk and fit with the Cavs. I know I’m going to get hammered for this but I see a little Joe Dumars in the Florida guard and imagining him and Kyrie together just seems like a harmony waIting to happen. Yes they will give up some size but with Tristan and Andy and around to fix their mistakes defensively it will work.

  • NamedMyKidPrice

    Im pretty sure they said Jordan didnt have a reliable jumper.  Just sayin…  If he would fall to 4 I’d run to the podium!

  • saggy

    i’m not sure what JJ Hickson you are watching – but I am watching the JJ who has played for 3 organizations in 2 seasons.  The one who averages 9 points and 6 boards per game.  The guy who shoots 49% from the field, and need to come out of games because he can’t play defense.

    Manu Ginobli is less athletic with a lower ceiling than Hickson.  I can list 20 guys like this.  saying a player has a “high ceiling” is akin to saying he is a bit of a project.  You don’t need to say that Kobe has a high ceiling, which he does/did.  Ray Allen is less athletic and had a lower ceiling than Hickson coming out of college.  He’s only going to the Hall of Fame.

  • mgbode

    I was thinking potato&cheese fried pierogies

  • mgbode

    i’m nostaligic like that though

  • floydrubino

    When you read the stuff that chad ford is writing you realize espn hired this guy as a journalist to write about the nba. He and ric bucher know nothing about basketball. They might be able to report what some ex gm tells them for some cash but outside of that the stuff I have read is not impressive. Lamb and Barnes will not be amazing players. Lamb can shoot decent but any high level defender will shut him down because he can’t post and he isn’t fast enough to be dominant. Barnes is good but how good would he be if he were the man and not surrounded by amazing talent. T-Rob and Davis are physically ready to be studs at the next level. Beal and MKG are worth the upside at #4.  What I want to do is get hopefully T-Rob and then trade next years no. 1 pick to portland for their no.11 pick with one of the second rounders and take either Perry Jones 3 .  Then hopefully Moe Harkless or Arnette Moultrie falls to you and then with your other 2nd rounder you grab Draymond Green.  So think about Cleveland if you add 

    -T-Rob,Beal, or MKG at #4

    Perry Jones if he is there at 11 and trade with Portland

    Moe Harkless or Arnette Moultrie at #24(if we have to trade up to get 1 of these guys I’m for it with one of our 2nd rounders)

    Draymond Green and Darius Miller if we keep both our 2nd rounders

    Our starting lineup(Ideally)

    Kyrie
    Moe Harkless
    T-Rob
    Varejao
    Perry Jones 3

    bench

    TT
    Draymond Green or Darius Miller

    all we would need to do in the future is get sign some free agent shooters in free agency and use our 2nd rounder next year and we would have the beginnings of a long athletic team that just needs to get a shooter and backup point guard to compete in the east.

  • mgbode

    you realize one of your above scenarios has the following for the Cavs to select (if Harkless was gone):

    PF T.Robinson
    SF/PF PJIII
    PF/C Moultrie
    PF D.Green

    To go along with our PF/C AV and PF TT.

  • Bigphil98433

    Not no but H!@# no

  • Bigphil98433

    How about best at 4 and best at 24 then draft your two second round pics or draft one and trade one for a future pick. The Cavs need a strong core of four bigtime players with the ability of becoming great and a second unit that can compete when the starters need a blow. The playoff next year shouldnt be the goal. Putting together the best team that can compete for championships for 6-8 years should be.

  • Bigphil98433

    No keep those pick for next year see post reply to Smith

  • Bigphil98433

    The Cavs can take all of there picks this year because they have two first rounders next year I believe. Put together a  strong core of talented players and keep building. Do not trade a first round pick to move up two spaces unless it’s for Davis. That’s not happening. MJ wants to trade because he knows that after Davis there’s a lot of talent to be had and he knows two first rounders in this draft are better then one. Now if the Bobcats are accepting of the 4 pick and a second rounder for number two the Cavs should jump at it. If they except 24 and two second rounders to move up to number two they should jump on that too. I do not see any of those two things happening. So draft all four picks build a young core and a strong beench.

  • mgbode

    but, who is the best at 4?  who is the best at 24?   is there a player we can trade down from 4 and still get who might be the best?  can we trade up from 24 to get a starter instead of a rotation player or is the value equal?

    those are the questions that Grant needs to answer (and more)

  • Bigphil98433

    But why fix there mistakes when Barns will score and score often. There’s no mistakes to fix when the balls coming throught the net. Barns isnt a risk. I think Beal is.

  • jmgatskiejr

    I guess I deserve the Jordan rebuttal considering I made a Joe D. comparison! As a fan I guess I’m just leery of hyper athletic wings that haven’t shown they can spot up before they hit the league. The NBA is full of good defensive 3s who will lay off MKG and dare him to shoot and alternately press him and force him into help defense that often will consist of a quality shot blocking big man. I do agree that if he is available at 4 then the cavs probably will and should take him. Our fanbase will expect it and be enthralled with the visions of Kyrie tossing halfcourt alleys to him off the break. As a marketing ideal it would be a gold mine. I just do not want us to use out other picks to move up to 2 for him. I agree with your idea to package them to move up for a second pick.
    As far as preferring Beal, I just really believe he’s a plug-in and forget about him talent who barring injury could complete our starting backourt and complement Kyrie for years to come and that would be a great pick.

  • Cavs123456789

     lol @Vindictive_Pat:disqus  bigphil, Barnes is a bad case Lou Dang, Beal is the man period

  • Colemanharold

    i think the cavs really want kidd-gilchrist, but lets be honest, there was only one player worth  trading the farm for and he is GONE! The cavs need every one of these picks because of the lack of talent on this team. Kyrie is probably the only untouchable, and I think they will try to pick someone who will be compatible at least with the !st pick (kidd-gilchrist or beal) and get at least one of the best in the top 5 in this draft. If they could get Terrence Ross and kidd-gilchrist this year, I think that would be a great base to go forward with. If they go with beal, I think will barton would be a nice player in the 2nd rd. #33 and if by chance royce white slides to #34 with his talent even though he has some anxiety and other problems, Byron  Scott might hit a home run with him bcause he is a beast and very talented on the basketball court…

  • Colemanharold

    I thought the cavs were interested in Chicago’s center( Asik) with a upcoming FA offer this coming season! He seems pretty mobile for a guy his size!

  • Guest

     Darko sucks bro….

  • Co811809

    ^^^doesnt understand sarcasm apparantly

  • Mike

    Don’t get Drummond! 26% FT – he’s the next Kwame Brown!